Blue Ball Properties Master Plan

Transportation Technical Committee

Meeting Report
Date: December 1, 1999
Location: Bellevue House, New Castle County, Delaware

  1. Introduction / Opening Comments

    Joe Wutka of DelDOT welcomed the attendees and explained that a new meeting schedule had been established, and that the advisory committee could decide whether this number of meetings was necessary.
  2. Presentation

    Barry Schoch of MTA proceeded to review the past meetings and the process that has lead to the current "narrowing of choices" of the transportation options currently being considered. The purpose of the evening's meeting was to present the narrowed list of the most promising alternatives based on preliminary traffic data that has been received. Barry reviewed the history of the "family of alternatives" process that was used to combine the 252 possible combinations into 3 options for Rt. 141, and 4 possible options for Foulk Rd, and why specific options were dismissed. He noted that there were a number of major comments that had come out of the November 3, 1999 meeting:
    • Allow as many movements as possible at all intersections
    • "Share the burden" of traffic
    • Consider other options at Augustine Cut-Off
    • Committee generally concerned about the "Upgrade Rockland Road" option (Concept V).
    • Committee generally opposed to "Remove Existing Route 141" option (Concept VI).
    These comments were used to help develop two new Alternatives (Option 5, New Bow-Tie and Option 6, Diamond), as well as to condense the four options from November into two options (Option 1A Fly-under and Option 4A Original Bow-Tie).

    A summary of the original options are: Option I included building new Rt. 141 and the retention of old Rt. 141; Option V also retains old Rt. 141, with an upgrade of existing Rockland Rd. This option also has Rockland Rd. continue after the Ronald McDonald House and the Astra Zeneca Triangle, split into one-way pairs. Option 4 includes a skew grade-separated crossing and tighter ramps with lower design speeds.

    The major points from the new options include:

    Option 1 Modified (Fly-Under)
    • Brings Rt. 202 over I-95 Ramp/ Jughandle - the traffic on Rt. 202 cannot merge
    • Foulk Rd. traffic can proceed under Route 202 to relocated Rt. 141
    • Foulk Rd. traffic travelling southbound onto Rt. 202 proceeds through a traffic signal
    • On Rt. 202 there is a southbound right turn onto Rt. 141
    • Rt. 141 access is eastbound down the ramp to Rt. 202
    Option 4 Modified (Original Bow-Tie)
    • There is no signal on Rt. 202 at Foulk Road
    • Foulk Rd. has access to Rt. 202 through a loop ramp
    Option 5 (New Bow-Tie)
    • Allows movement back and forth on Foulk under Rt. 202 in both directions
    • All the local traffic occurs under Rt. 202
    • Traffic can move southbound on Rt. 202 to Foulk Rd.
    • I-95 traffic is no longer a "fly-under," but must stop at a signal on Foulk
    • There are two lanes with a right turn from I-95
    Option 6 (Diamond)
    • A smaller footprint than Option 5, ramps are moved closer to Rt. 202
    • Eastbound relocated Rt. 141 and westbound Foulk Rd. can turn left onto Rt. 202 at a signal on Rt. 202
    • There is a two phase signal at Rt. 202 for Rt. 141 and Foulk Rd.
    A CORSIM traffic simulation analysis was shown for 1999 and 2010 PM peak hours. This will be useful to help explain how the traffic is currently moving through the area. The CORSIM analysis for several design options will be available for the December 8, 1999 meeting.

    A request for a with specific traffic volumes at each of the local roads was requested. Looking further at Options 5 and 6, as well as revisiting several previous options was also requested.
  3. Questions / Answers / Comments

    Q: Why is the project team looking at closing Rt. 141 at any capacity when it needs additional capacity to make it function at an acceptable LOS?
    1. The reasons are due to an economic development standpoint, there is an opportunity to balance the parkland, aesthetics and the development that will take place on the site, and closing Rt. 141 may allow some needs to be met in this area. Also, from a capacity standpoint, there is an opportunity to provide grade-separation at Foulk Road/ US 202. Grade-separation is not feasible at US 202/ Murphy Road due to existing land use.
    Q: Please explain how the traffic numbers were obtained?
    1. The traffic numbers resulted from a combination of the AZ traffic impact study (TIS) the Origin-Destination study that MTA conducted and the regional model that DelDOT uses. There are certain premises that are added into the model, that improvements will be made to the Tyler McConnell Bridge, increasing it to four (4) lanes so that there will be additional capacity. The regional model includes the entire Delmarva Peninsula, the year 2010 projections include all of AZ's development and additional development on the DuPont property as well as general expected population/ employment growth in the area.
    Q: Is there any summary/ percentage of what numbers were used to calculate the numbers available?
    1. Yes, this should be available, projections were made at 2002, 2007, and 2010 for the AZ TIS.
    Q: Why is Option 6 important to AZ?
    1. Option 6 is modeled because of the impacts that each of the options have on each other. It is important to model all the scenarios that can impact traffic in the area. (It was noted by Tony Felicia of Astra Zeneca that they have not put any "Preferred option" on the table.)
    Q: Why would cars go north on Rt. 202 from Rt. 141 (Option 6)?
    1. The opportunity is being left open in an effort to be consistent with allowing all moves at all intersections. Astra Zeneca traffic could utilize this movement.
    Q: Is there concern from the project team regarding an increase of speed on Rt. 202 (Option 5 and 6) without a stoplight?
    1. Yes, and congestion at peak hours should help curb this.
    Q: Has impacts to the Blue Ball Dairy Barn and the proposed parkland been looked at if the intersection is shifted north?
    1. The location of these improvements have not been determined as of yet, the design is still in a conceptual stage.
    Q: Options 5 and 6 seem to require a large amount of land.
    1. Option 6 takes a smaller amount of land. The issues such as stormwater retention and land usage for these options needs to be investigated further.
    Q: If the intersection kept the "T" on the west side of Rt. 202 from Foulk Rd. and the loop on the east would that work?
    1. This has been talked about, once traffic is stopped (the "T" on Rt. 202) running an opposite left turn makes sense and the whole design (Option 6- the Diamond) reduces the footprint on the site.
    Q: In Option 6 there are two left turn lanes onto Rt. 202.
    1. This is required.
    Q: Where does the Augustine Cut-Off fit in to the design?
    1. This is being looked at separately. An interchange cannot be put in at the Augustine Cut-Off because of the weave that is required. With a weave getting onto Rt. 202 from I-95 and a weave for the interchange that is being added to Foulk Rd, an additional weave would create complications. All of the design alternatives will impact the Augustine Cut-Off. A signalized intersection will not work here. There are options, a right-in/ right-out does not work for Option 5 and it may work for Option 6. (It is noted that a design has been submitted from an engineer working with the city as an alternative. This will be reviewed by the team, as will other possibilities.)
    Q: What is the design speed of the new roads?
    1. The ramps are designed at 25 mph and Rt. 202 at 40-45 mph.
  4. Conclusion / Adjournment

    The committee concluded its discussions at 9:30 PM. The next meeting is on December 8, 1999 at 4:30 PM at Brandywine High School.